Africa’s richest musicians

African Music has evolved over the years. Just
like the continent itself, the citizens and
countries therein, the average African music has
seen some degree of westernization coupled with
the fact that some of the African songs come
with a captivating African dance moves to help
popularize the songs. The original background of
jams and sounds from the African perspective
often makes a perfect blend with the western
pop kind of music creating a powerful party beat
that is more than compelling to dance to. There
are a few Africa musicians who have acquired
a great deal of wealth by appealing to the
average African’s sense of good music. They
have become so popular with what they know
how to do best; you practically have to put down
a ton of cash to invite them to grace
your occasion. Internationally, they are fast
becoming sought after names in the music and
entertainment industry making Africa proud.
Answers Africa brings you the top 10 wealthiest
African Musicians.

10 Wealthiest African
Musicians

10. Jose Chameleone

Joseph Mayanja popularly known by his stage
name as Joe Chameleon or Jose Chameleone was
born in 1979 and is a popular reggae musician
from Uganda. Singing mostly in
Luganda, English and Swahili, Jose started his
career at an young age in the early 1990s as
disco MC at Maganjo Mizuri night club while he
was still a student at the Progressive Secondary
School, Kampala Uganda. He eventually became
affiliated with Kenya’s Ogopa DJs record label.
Jose Chameleone’s style of music is a perfect
combination of Ugandan folk music, Central
African rumba, zouk on a background of reggae.
He released one of the most popular songs in the
East Africa: VAlu Valu and has popularized some
of the phrases he uses in his songs to become
regular and everyday words such as Basiima
Ogenze, Nekolera Maali, Shida Za Dunia among
others. He is regarded as a music star who
restructured the popular local music in Uganda
at the wake of the 21st century.
Jose Chameleone is the biggest money maker in
the Eastern Africa and has acquired a range of 4
wheels as his “testament” which
include; Cadillac escalade, Mercedes Benz ml
200 super custom convertible and a Premio. He
also owns a big mansion among the elites of
Uganda in Seguka hills located at the outskirts
of Kampala.

9. Banky W

BankyW whose real name is Olubankole
Wellington was born on March 27, 1981 in the
United States is a Nigerian R&B artist and
generally regarded as the King of African
R&B, he grew up in Lagos where he began
singing in church at an early age and upon
completion of secondary school moved to New
York to study Engineering. He won and was
featured in numerous competitions while he was
still a student. His talent in music has made him
one of the richest African musicians. He has
been a brand ambassador for Estisalat mobile in
Nigeria and is currently the face for Samsung
products in the west African nation. Out of his
generous heart, Banky W has started off Mr
capable foundation; an education charity
organization with the aim to aid in the education
of children from poor families.

8. Hugh Masekela

Born on April 4, 1939, Hugh Ramopolo Masekela
is a South African singer and trumpeter,
flugelhornist, cornetist and composer. He is one
of the most talented Jazz artists in Africa. His
talents got him nominated for a Grammy Award
in the “Best Contemporary Pop Performance –
Instrumental” music category in 1968. In 2010,
President Zuma honoured him with the highest
order in South Africa: The Order of Ikhamanga,
and 2011 saw Masekela receive a Lifetime
Achievement award at the WOMEX World Music
Expo in Copenhagen. The US Virgin Islands
proclaimed ‘Hugh Masekela Day’ in March 2011,
not long after Hugh joined U2 on stage during
the Johannesburg leg of their 360 World Tour.
U2 frontman Bono described meeting and
playing with Hugh as one of the highlights of his
career. He also received other awards: 27 April
2010, Ghana Music Awards: 2007 African Music
Legend award, 2005 Channel O Music
Video Awards: Lifetime Achievement Award,
2002 BBC Radio Jazz Awards: International
Award of the Year, nominated for Broadway’s
1988 Tony Award as Best Score (Musical), with
music and lyrics collaborator Mbongeni Ngema,
for “Sarafina!”. Masekela owns a professional
studio in Botswana, and makes good money on
invitations to major festivals across the world
and the sales of his albums.

7. 2 Face Idibia

Born in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria, Innocent
Ujah Idibia who is more popularly known by his
stage name as 2 Face Idibia, is a Nigerian
singer-songwriter, actor and record producer.
Started off as a member of the defunct Nigerian
R&B/hip hop group Plantashun Boyz. He has 5
Albums to his name and has received numerous
nominations for which he won 40 of the Awards
to date and there were just about 6 other
nominations he received where he did not win.
The ‘African queen’ singer is one of the kings of
African music. He has a vast investment in real
estate across Nigeria, earns around $50k to
$80k per show and owns a night club in Nigeria
just to name a few.
2Face has established an NGO called 2Face
Idibia Reach-Out Foundation . In 2009, 2Face
was appointed as ambassador the National
Agency for Food and Drug Administration and
Control. He released a song “Man Unkind” in
order to raise awareness on the menace of fake
and sub-standard food and drug products in
Nigeria. and he is the first non-Liberian to
become an honorary member of the Liberian
music society in recognition for his outstanding
contribution to the growth of music in Africa.

6. Fally Ipupa

Fally Ipupa is a singer and songwriter from the
Democratic Republic of the Congo. In the early
days of his musical career between 1999 and
2006, he was a part of the band of Koffi Olomidé,
Quartier Latin International after which he
started his own solo career. His released his first
album: Droit chemin in 2006, and his
secondalbum Arsenal de Belles Melodies (A2BM)
in 2009. Fally Ipupa won the Kora Awards for
Best Artist or Group from Central Africa in 2007
and 3 years after, he won the MTV Africa Music
Awards 2010 for Best Video (for Sexy Dance)
and Best Francophone. Fally Ipupa is credited
for modernizing the Lingala music. He is a
poster boy for a number of clothing brands in
Paris, where he also performs at sold out shows,
making a lot of money.

5. Salif Keita

Salif Keïta, a proud citizen of Mali was born on
the 25th of August, 1949. He has seen the
transition of African music through the ages.
Keita is an afro-pop singer and songwriter
whose unique style of music has earned him the
title and reputation as the “Golden Voice of
Africa”. He is a direct descendant of the founder
of the Mali Empire, Sundiata Keita. While this
sounds interesting, it means that given his royal
heritage, he should never have become a singer
under the Malian caste system, which was
deemed to be the role of a griot. Those who know
Salif Keita regard him as a very humble man
despite his riches. The acquired his private
island and a number of real estates in France.

4. Koffi Olomide

Koffi Olomide whose real name is Antoine
Christophe Agbepa Mumba was born on Friday,
July 13, 1956. The DR Congolese music star is a
soukous singer, dancer, producer, and composer
and has up to 7 albums up his sleeves which are
well patronized in the market. It is reported that
Koffi Olomide charges up to 100,000 euros per
show. His album Haut de Gamme: Koweït, Rive
Gauche is among the listed 1001 Albums You
Must Hear Before You Die. Koffi Olomide is
widely accepted as one of Africa’s biggest and
most successful musicians today and is among
the Answers Africa list of richest musicians in
African music.

3. D’banj

Dapo Daniel Oyebanjo who is more popularly
known as the Koko Master or D’banj (adopted
from a combination of his first name Dapo and
his surname Oyebanjo) was born June 9, 1980),
is a Nigerian singer-songwriter and harmonica
player. He has won quite a lot of awards
including the MTV Europe Music Awards for
Best African Act 2007, MTV Africa Music
Awards 2009 Artist of the Year. BET Awards of
2011 for Best International Act; Africa. D’banj
released an internatonal hit song in 2012
“Oliver Twist” which has brought more light
along his way. Oliver Twist is an uptempo dance
fusion of Afro-Beats and electronic dance music
that topped the African charts 2011 and was a
top 10 hit in the UK singles chart in 2012
reaching No 2 on the UK R&B chart.
D banj is the first African artist signed to Kanye
west’s GOOD music label. He was as
a campaigner for President Goodluck Jonathan
and has a series of koko lounges; a high end club
in Nigeria and other investments including Koko
water. D banj also made $1 million dollars when
he was paid by a T.V station to star on his own
reality show called the Koko Mansion. He has a
crib in Atlanta worth of $1.5 million and
reportedly charges on the upside of $100000
per show currently.

2. P-Square

The Nigerian R&B identical twin brother
musicians are among the wealthiest musicians in
Africa. Peter and Paul who go be the name P-
Square produce and release their albums
through Square Records. In December 2011,
they joined Akon’s Konvict Muzik label and in
the upper year, also signed with Universal Music
South Africa in a record distribution deal. The
duo currently make more than $150,000 per
show. Square ville, P-Square’s crib which
is located at Ikeja is worth $3 million and as
part of their brand support, they also have a 3
years deal with Globalcom; a Nigerian
telecommunication company as brand
ambassadors where they are paid a million
dollars a year.

1. Youssou N’dour

Youssou N’Dour is a Senegalese singer who was
born on the 1st of October, 1959. He is a
talented composer, percussionist, songwriter,
actor, businessman and a politician. He was once
described as “perhaps the most famous singer
alive” in Senegal. Youssou N’Dour was among
those that reshaped a style of music known in
the Serer language as mbalax which is a popular
Senegalese music type. It is attributed to him as
the richest musician in Africa. He owns the
biggest media house in Senegal with radio and
TV stations with a lot of investments in real
estate. He once also served as a Senegalese
cultural ambassador. In April 2012, N’dour was
appointed the tourism and culture minister in
the cabinet of new Prime Minister Abdoul
Mbaye.

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